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Presbytery of East Tennessee E-Newsletter January 2010
In This Issue
Hunger Action!
2009 Tax Tips
Confirmation Retreat
News and Events around the Presbytery
Quick Links
Equip Tool Box - resources for ministry
John Knox Center - register for 2010 summer camp now!
Meeting Highlights  from the Nov. 10, 2009 PET meeting
MissionInsite - web-based demographic service 
PETNET - our social networking site
PET Budget Report as of 11-30-09
Red Bucket Sunday - Special Offering 
Join Our Mailing List
Hunger Action!

Souper Bowl of Caring: February 7, 2010


Souper Bowl of Caring logoDid you know that a Presbyterian youth group in South Carolina started the Souper Bowl of Caring? In 1990, the youth of Spring Valley Presbyterian Church in Columbia were inspired by their seminary intern when he prayed, "Lord, even as we enjoy the Super Bowl football game, help us be mindful of those who are without a bowl of soup." 


One of the reasons the Souper Bowl is popular is because each participating group sends the money and/or canned goods collected directly to a hunger-related organization of its choice.


Eighteen of our congregations reported participating in the Souper Bowl of Caring in 2009 and gave $8,012 and almost 700 canned items to area organizations! Nationally the total was $10,339,937 from 13,797 groups. To use the interactive map to see more details about participation, just go to www.souperbowl.org. Zip codes can be entered under "view profile" for further research. Many of our congregations have joined this movement over the years and it is easy to join in once again or participate for the first time! If you have any questions or I may be of help in any way, please contact me at Deborah@presbyteryeasttn.org.
Thank you to all of our congregations for all of the ways you sought to do justice and love kindness in 2009 through your efforts to alleviate hunger and poverty in our world.
Deborah Phillips
Presbytery of East Tennessee Hunger Program
"Feed my lambs."  John 21:15
2009 Tax Tips for Ministers and Churches 

Tax return collageThe replay of the 2009 tax tips for ministers and churches is now available on www.pensions.org.  This annual one hour event is designed to help ministers and churches understand clergy taxes.


Listen to the replay as host Paul Payton welcomes renowned clergy and tax expert, Richard Hammer LLM, CPA, as well as Steven Flemming, a Board education specialist.  They offer helpful information and tips on numerous topics, such as legislative developments and court rulings, on going tax issues, and saving for retirement.


Their review includes:


*Recent tax law changes that will affect ministers and churches

*The expenses that are and are not deductible

*A ten-step year-end check list

*How lending money to a minister could put a church tax-exempt status at risk


The session includes answers to tax questions that were submitted by registrants prior to the webinar.
MissionInsite Equips Our Congregations

MissionInsite logo


Several churches are currently taking advantage of the powerful demographic tool called MissionInsite.  However, the majority of our churches and leaders may not know that they can use this user-friendly, up to date and interactive information to learn more about their neighborhoods. Additionally, MissionInsite encourages congregations to discern their gifts and strengths in order to provide relevant mission opportunities for their surrounding communities.  If you are at all curious or want to learn more, please call either Laura Tappan in the Presbytery's office or Lina Hart (865-388-2381 or 423-877-2422).  They can not only provide information, but also give you the access code for setting up a free account.


In the new year, there are a couple of events at which you can get personal training for MissionInsite.  On March 10-11, 2010, in Atlanta there will be an extensive training session led by the MI staff.  See http://www.missioninsite.com/PDF_Files/conference-2010.pdf to see the training schedule and event details. 


At the Presbytery-wide Loaves &  Fishes Experience, April 16,17, 2010, at the Sequoyah Hills Presbyterian Church, Donna Hoppestad will be leading a Saturday afternoon workshop (PM4) called Exploring Your Changing Neighborhood - With User Friendly MissionInsite.  She will give interested folks a tour of the MI capabilities and show you how easy it is to use. 


MissionInsite services are basically free for your use through this next year.  We urge all churches and leaders to at least check out this service while it is available.

Confirmation Retreat - Feb. 26-27

YouthDoes your church have only a few youth eligible or interested in Confirmation?  Would your Confirmation Class be open to learning more about the PC(USA)?   Would an adventure on a challenge ropes course help equip your youth to trust.... to learn more about themselves... to live out what it means to take leaps of faith? 


If you answered YES to any of these questions, then check out the Confirmation Retreat that is being offered through the Equip Mission Team and takes place at John Knox Center.  The retreat will begin at 6:00pm on Friday, Feb. 26 and end at 3:00pm on Saturday, Feb. 27.  Registration is first come first served, so signing up as soon as possible is important - the deadline is Monday, Feb. 15. Click HERE for the flier & registration form.
Copies of the flier and registration form have been sent to each church and is also available on the Presbytery's website.  This event is open to churches of all sizes as it is designed to help youth connect with their contemporaries in other Presbyterian churches, to introduce them to the wonders of John Knox Center and to provide an engaging experience with their pastor as well as others going through much the same faith journey.
News & Events Around the Presbytery 
Presbytery Meeting at First, Oak Ridge - Feb. 20
First Presbyterian Church, Oak Ridge TNThe 102nd Stated Meeting of the Presbytery of East Tennessee will be held on Saturday, February 20 at First Presbyterian Church, Oak Ridge.  Registration will begin at 9:30am and the meeting will begin at 10:00am.  The meeting packet will be available on the Presbytery website on Feb. 5. 
Shiloh Celebrates Beloved Centenarian
Mrs. SinclairAt the December 6th worship service, Shiloh Presbyterian Church celebrated the life of Mrs. Beulah Warren Sinclair on the occasion of her 100th birthday.  Mrs. Sinclair has been a member of Shiloh for 72 years and has served as an elder, deacon, usher, choir member, Sunday School teacher, director of Vacation Bible School, President of the Women's Association and church historian.
Mrs. Sinclair was a school teacher for 27 years.  She has served in leadership positions in numerous community organizations and is currently active in three national service organizations.  "She has been a joy and blessing to Shiloh Church, the community and the world."
2010 Theologian-in-Residence at Tusculum College - February 2, 9, 16 and 23
The 2010 Theologian-in-Residence series will be led by Dr. Al Staggs, who will give audiences a unique view into various aspects of theology from the legacy of Dr. Dietrich Bonhoeffer to the role of laughter in life.  Dr. Staggs brings notable theologians and theological ideas to life as a performance artist.  His four programs will be A View from the Underside: The Legacy of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Clarence Jordan and the God Movement, Laughter for Life, and William Sloan Coffin: A Priestly Prophet.  Click HERE for brochure and registration information.

Tusculum College logo

Spread the News!
We invite you to share your news with us.  All articles and news items must be submitted by the 20th of the month prior to publication.  Send your information to Dana Hendrix, dana@presbyteryeasttn.org